Arizona Coyotes: Friday Fantasy Hockey

Shayne Gostisbehere was one of the top fantasy defenseman in 2022 (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
Shayne Gostisbehere was one of the top fantasy defenseman in 2022 (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images) /

Happy Friday Arizona Coyotes fans! On Fridays we will look at Coyotes players from a fantasy hockey perspective in Friday Fantasy Hockey (cue the epic, cheesy music), and provide analysis and insights on where you should draft him in your league.

Fantasy hockey has a slightly more intricate scoring system compared to fantasy football and requires a larger time commitment. Having to set your lineup every day and multiple scoring categories is required.

Standard scoring leagues award points (+/-) for goals, assists, points, powerplay goals, powerplay assists, powerplay points, short handed points, goals against, saves, wins, loses, shutouts, and overtime loses.

There are modified stats/category leagues that in addition to the standard scoring system, award points (+/-) for advanced stats like shots, hits, blocked shots, faceoff wins, penalty minutes, and more (depending on the league commissioner).

The Arizona Coyotes feature players who fly under the radar but have fantasy value.

This Friday Fantasy Hockey we look at defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere.

2021-22 Season Review

Entering the 2021-22 season, Gostisbehere was still considered one of the low-end, puck moving defensemen as his fantasy production had begun to decline since the 2017-18 season. From 2016-2018 he was one of the top fantasy defenseman, that had sneaky value (typically taken later in drafts). Compared to majority of defenseman in the league, he can could score, just not at an elite level. A change of scenery did some good and Gostisbehere was once again one of the top fantasy d-men.

Shayne finished the season with 14 goals, 37 assists, and 51 points in 82 games. The 2021-22 season was his second best statistical season of his career. I guess coming to Arizona was kind of a rebirth of sorts for Shayne. At 29 years old he is older for a hockey player, but still should have a few good seasons ahead of him (think Keith Yandle).

He was the 15th highest scoring defenseman in the NHL. His name was still not recognized as he was burried behind Superstars like Cale Makar, Roman Josi, Voctor Hedman, Adam Fox, etc. That is quite the list of stars. To put his season into focus, he finished with more points than John Klingberg, Alex Pietrangelo, Mackenzie Weegar, Jared Spurgeon, Erik Karlsson, and Mark Giordano.

So what did his season look like from a fantasy perspective?

Standard Scoring

Gostisbehere’s 14-37-52 stat line was good for 168.5 points, making him the 31st ranked defenseman in fantasy hockey. His 168.5 points were more than center/RW Nick Schmaltz (153.5).  At the start of the season Gostisbehere was owned in 65% of most leagues and by the end he was owned in over 80% of leagues.

In leagues with 10 teams the rosters are typically loaded with star players across the board and depending on what the roster sizes are in those leagues, plays a role in if he was owned or not. In 12-team and 14-team leagues he would have been rostered.

His average draft position last season was #60, meaning in 10-team league he was a 6th-round pick (on average), in 12 team and 14-team leagues he was taken in the top 4 rounds. That is a trend that should happen again this season.

Given the fact that he plays on the Arizona Coyotes, and most fans outside of Arizona stay away from the Coyotes’ players because of the rebuild, he may slip slightly in drafts as he could be looked at as a player that might regress statistically.

Do not believe this. Take him between rounds 5-7 in all drafts. If he is available when your 5th round pick comes up, and there isn’t a number 1 forward available, snag him up.

The number of Coyotes fans in your league will determine how much earlier he is taken.

Modified Stats/Category

Looking at advanced stats, Gostisbehere had 2 powerplay goals, 17 powerplay assists, 19 powerplay points, 151 shots on goal, 60 hits, 26 penalty minutes, and 115 blocked shots. Those advanced numbers are impressive, making him one of the more well-rounded puck moving defensemen. Those numbers are good for 458 points, making him one of the top ranked players in most advanced scoring leagues (scoring systems are different regarding point values for different stats).

In the Yahoo 14-team modified stats league that I am in, Gostisbehere was drafted early and was one of the best defensemen in the league.

Shayne Gostisbehere was a real surprise last season for the Coyotes. He is the best puck moving defenseman that the team has had since Keith Yandle. If he has another solid season, his value could go through the roof as he is a likely trade candidate at some point this season. Do not expect him to finish this season in Arizona as his contract expires at the end of the season. He will 100% be a trade chip at some point.

Draft him in all league formats. He is a fantasy stud.

Happy Howlin’!